23 August 2014 | Red-125
Pathetic wish-fulfillment movie
The French film "Nous ne vieillirons pas ensemble" was shown in the U.S. as "We Won't Grow Old Together (1972)". It was written by Maurice Pialat, directed by Maurice Pialat, based on a novel by (can you guess) Maurice Pialat.
Pialat was known as an arrogant and unpleasant person, and he's written a novel about a middle-aged guy who is arrogant and unpleasant, but is nevertheless loved and respected by everyone he meets. Jean (played by Jean Yanne) does some sort of work in cinema, although the only work we ever see him doing is filming a crowd scene for a few seconds as he walks along with a hand-held camera. Also, at one point, Jean is painting his apartment, and he's reminded that he's supposed to "work on that script."
Marlène Jobert plays Jean's girl friend, Catherine. Catherine, who is much younger than Jean, is long-suffering, physically abused, and psychologically abused. Nonetheless, she always comes back for more. The physical abuse is that Jean slaps her and rips her clothing. (Maybe there's more, but we don't see it.) The psychological abuse consists of Jean telling Catherine that she's stupid, knows nothing, and is ugly. (He specifically points out that she has freckles and "rats' legs.") We can see that she's not stupid, and she doesn't know about films because he hasn't taught her anything. As for being ugly, check out Marlène Jobert on Google Image and decide for yourself.
We are repeatedly informed that Catherine and Jean have been together for six years. However, Jean is still married to Françoise, played by the beautiful Macha Méril. Françoise is apparently still under Jean's spell, because she tries to help him win Catherine back when Catherine has made one of her periodic efforts to leave the relationship.
So, what we are watching is Maurice Pialat telling us that he has that je ne sais quoi that entitles him to treat everyone badly and still be loved and respected by all. In fact, they don't just love and respect Jean, they worry about Jean. What will happen if Catherine really does leave him? Incredible.
If you're looking for a film that will frustrate you while you watch it, then this is the movie for you. I don't know if there's an opposite to a feel-good movie. If there is, this is that movie.